“As a football fan, it was a great game of football,” Real manager Carlo Ancelotti told reporters.
“As manager of Madrid, I have to keep in mind that we … conceded two goals very quickly. But we have scored three goals at the Bernabeu. Now we hope to reach the final. “
Kevin de Bruyne’s brilliant diving header gave City the lead after just 94 seconds. In the 11th minute, when Gabriel Jesus rolled inside the box to double the home side’s lead, it looked as if Real were going through a difficult evening. The 13-time champions, the most successful club in the history of the competition, have never conceded two goals so quickly in the Champions League before.
City, who wanted to win the Champions League for the first time, were dying and should have gone ahead 3-0, but Pep Guardiola’s side failed to turn around the promising chances, and Real counter-attacked – Benzema. Delivered the ball to the bottom corner. Half the deficit before the break.
Eight minutes after City’s second goal, Phil Foden headed home from Fernandinho’s cross, before Venezius Jr. scored a superb goal to make it 3-2.
However, more goals and drama were to come.
In the 74th minute, Bernardo Silva beat Real goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois with a quick effort in the upper corner, then Benzema scored his second goal of the night – a penalty that would be played again and again.
Aymeric Laporte was fined for handling inside the area and Benzema was stepped up with ‘Panenka’ – sentence from the middle – eight minutes left.
The Frenchman missed two penalties in Real’s La Liga win against Osasuna six days ago, so it was surprising to try a spot-kick in such a stressful situation.
Commenting on BBC Radio 5 Live, former England striker Alan Shearer said: “All I can do is laugh and think, ‘I can’t believe Karim Benzema has done this yet’ … Courage! It was incredible. “
It was a great way to end a special night.
“It was a great game for both sides. We did a lot of good things. Unfortunately we conceded goals and we didn’t score much. But these are two games and we have one,” Guardiola told reporters. There’s another one a week. ”